California bill meant to crack down on Amazon’s workplace practices

California
Union activists and other supporters of Amazon workers protested in May outside Fidelity Investments, one of Amazon’s largest shareholders, in Santa Monica. Activists want Amazon to be more accountable to workers, who too frequently get injured on the job. (Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

Union activists and other supporters of Amazon workers protested in May outside Fidelity Investments, one of Amazon’s largest shareholders, in Santa Monica. Activists want Amazon to be more accountable to workers, who too frequently get injured on the job. (Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

California lawmakers are taking aim at Amazon.

An Assembly-passed bill is expected to reach the Senate floor this week or next to crack down on the opaque, algorithm-led and harsh warehouse work conditions often attributed to the Seattle technology behemoth.

The bill, the first such legislation in the nation, would require warehouses to disclose quotas and work speed metrics to employees and government agencies. It would ban “time off task” penalties that affect health and safety, including bathroom use, and prohibit retaliation against workers who complain.

Amazon dominates online shopping across the nation amid a surge in e-commerce fueled by the COVID-19 pandemic. With 950,000 U.S. employees and $368 billion in revenue in 2020, it is the nation’s second-largest employer after Walmart, and is under growing pressure to address worker injuries in its supply chain.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.

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